Last season, free agency saw the Los Angeles Kings taking a number of low-cost, short-term gambles on July 1, with basically none of them working out. Joe Thornton rumors aside, LA is off to the same start in 2017. This time, it’s with a player who the current general manager played with: Michael Cammalleri. No team confirmation or money details are available but multiple reporters have confirmed.
[UPDATE: Helene Elliott confirmed the $$$ one minute after we posted this.]
Cammalleri to Kings is one year, $1 million plus bonuses.— Helene Elliott (@helenenothelen) July 1, 2017
Cammalleri just turned 35 and is coming off a 10-goal, 21-assist season in 61 games with the New Jersey Devils. The prior season, he had 38 points in 42 games when he wasn’t sitting out with a wrist injury. Much like Jarome Iginla last season, Cammalleri’s drop in production was closely tied to a drop in shooting percentage; his 7.0% shooting percentage was easily the lowest of his career. LA got the bounceback from Iginla, and if they get a similar one from Cammalleri it’s not a bad gamble. (Especially at this cost.) Cammalleri had 1.42 points per 60 minutes at 5v5 last season, which would have been 5th-best on the Kings. But if they don’t, it could be a Teddy Purcell situation all over again. His possession numbers were average on a below-average possession team, so his contributions may not be much if the points don’t come.
Cammalleri had been bought out by the Devils from the last two years (at $5 million per) last week, leaving him free to sign anywhere. Looks like his old friend Rob Blake told him he might get to play with Anze Kopitar again.
We’ll update once we have an exact figure for Cammalleri’s salary.